Including Your Pet on Your Wedding DayIncluding Your Pet on the Wedding Day

If you have a beloved pet, it may be unimaginable to celebrate your wedding day without including that special member of the family.  This isn’t just about honoring your companion; this is also about sharing milestones with the new family the two of you are forging.  By far, the cutest way to show your shared love for your pet is by including him/ her in the ceremony. If your furry friend is mannerly, consider making him a dapper ring-bearer, or bestowing the title of flower girl on her. A pup in a floral crown or bowtie is simply too charming to resist!  If you do so, insure that you designate a friend as the pet sitter to insure that throughout the ceremony they are looked after and that during the reception they have a comfortable quiet place to hang out.

If it’s not practical for your pet to be present, there are still sweet ways to keep them close. The bride can carry a paw print pendant with the bouquet, or wear a locket with a picture enclosed. The groom can feature a sidekick in his accessories such as tie clips, cuff links, or even embroidered socks.  We especially love the silver cufflinks below of one of our couples adorable fur baby.

We also encourage our couples to consider bringing their sweet furry companions on engagement sessions or if not for the wedding ceremony, then possibly the first look before the ceremony.  Your wedding is the ultimate celebration of family’s legacy, no matter how many legs they have.

Including your pet on your wedding dayIncluding your pet on your wedding day


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groomsmen gifts Groomsmen Gift Ideas

When it comes to wedding traditions such as gifts for groomsmen, many guys draw a blank or simply don’t have time to find the perfect gift to say thank you.  Today I am going to encourage you to think inside the box with  memorable statements of appreciation.  A few months ago, I shared how much my husband and I love subscription boxes. They are often highly customizable, meaningful, and easy.  J and I can vouch that your groomsmen will actually use, and enjoy their gifts.

The Classy Gentleman

For the classy, discerning gentlemen, I can’t tell you how much we love Bespoke Post! They cater to everyone’s inner Mad Men with products such as whisky stones, artisan flasks, and stylish leather goods.  While J has it as a monthly subscription, you could purchase individual boxes or gifts as you choose.

The Fun Loving Guy

If your groomsmen are fun-loving, nerd culture types, then Loot Crate will be their personal paradise.  There are a plethora of custom crates that are tailored to specific interests like gaming, comics, film and tv.

The Outdoorsy Guy

Man Crate, and Kinderbox are great for the manly-men. This company offers choices such as gourmet jerky, beard grooming products, personalized bar ware, grilling, and an array of options for sports fans.  Your wedding is the perfect opportunity to express gratitude to these important friends with whom you’ve chosen to share your joy and we love the idea of tailoring gifts to each person in your bridal party rather than simply getting a gift with the one size fits all mentality.

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Pink dress and navy suit with bowtie engagement session

Dressing for Your Engagement Portraits

If you recently got engaged and are planning your engagement portraits, you are probably wondering what to wear.  You may also find that your version of what to wear is very different than what your groom had in mind.  That is where we as your photographer come in.

We want you to not only feel amazing during your session, we also want you to have a great time with little no stress in regards to getting ready so here are our top 5 tips for getting ready:

  1. Try everything on 3 days before your shoot to insure that everything fits well and that nothing needs to be dry cleaned or ironed.  This also gives you a chance to snap a quick photo and send to us or share on social media.
  2. Have your makeup professionally done and your hair if your concerned about it frizzing like mine does.
  3. Drink a lot of water starting two days before hand.  This adds a nice glow to your skin.
  4. Bring chapstick for him and lipgloss or lipstick for you to the shoot.
  5. Avoid spray tans two weeks before the session

Now that you feel prepared for the session, you are probably wondering what to wear.  Here are some of our tips for finding the right outfit:

  1. Find your outfit first and then his
  2. Women look more elegant in dresses and heels tend to elongate your legs.
  3. Pick one outfit that is semi-dressy and one that is dressy to give you the diversity of two looks
  4. Accessorize with pretty earrings or a necklace
  5. Make sure that your guys outfit coordinates with yours but isn’t overly matchy matchy.
  6. When in doubt, Rent the Runway is a great place to find unique and elegant attire.

Want more information on removing stress from your wedding day process?  Check out our newsletter below.Free People dress for engagement session blush pinkWinery Engagment with blue bowtie and suspendersRent the runway fur vest engagment portraitHot pink heels in the snow dress for your portrait


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Splurge vs steal decoratingSave vs a Splurge

Creating a home together is a fun, optimistic chapter in your newlywed story. However, creating a home that feels like home can quickly change from exciting to overwhelming when the costs add up and you are maybe just starting out. How can you express your style and yet spend wisely?

Saving Money

As newlyweds, we decided to “save money” and furnish the house with seemingly affordable Ikea products. Two years later and a move left us with everything falling apart and we had to invest all over again. We ended up spending twice what we intended because we weren’t selective about how we allocated our budget the first time. When it comes to long term, highly used items like furniture, this is where you should assign priority. Accents and décor are much easier to replace, so considering spending less (or later) on these.

Come to an Agreement

In eleven years of marriage we have learned to splurge on a dining set that is reliable and sturdy because of the amount of family activities and quality time spent around it.  In your list of things to invest in, I would suggest good comfy couches and a mattress that gives you the best sleep possible.

Consider saving on the “pretty” things like accent pieces, frames, lamps, and vases. Target sales, flea markets, and thrift stores offer great discoveries and a can of spray paint can do amazing wonders for very little money.  Consider assigning a smaller budget to these items as your tastes may change and in the near future you can slowly replace these details with more high-end options.

Remember, this isn’t only your first chance to create your style as a couple, this is also your first opportunity to build financial wisdom and stewardship together. What may seem like a cheap purchase now may come back to haunt you in a year or two when it falls apart and does not last the length of time you wished it had.

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Spring clean newly married feels like home

Make it Feel Like Home

After being shut in the house all winter with windows shut, one of my favorite things to do is spring cleaning.  We fling open the windows and go from room to room pulling things out from closets, cabinets, and drawers in order to minimize clutter and bring renewed life to the house.  I didn’t always do this and one year the clutter just kind of overwhelmed me.  As a married couple, we both realized how much we desire clean, neat, and organized spaces.  With two kids now, that doesn’t always happen but we still do a spring cleaning.  Not sure how to start your own?  Here are a few things we love to use.

Setting Goals for a Mental Spring Cleaning

I love lists, goals, and charts and have since I was a little kid.  Whose with me on the gold sticker charts from childhood?  These Powersheets are my grown up version of this and funny thing is, they come with stickers.  This planner helps me to monthly and seasonally set big and small goals to help keep me and my house on track.  For the spring as we face a move, it has been incredibly helpful in mentally cleaning out all the clutter in my busy brain.  Once that is in order, I find myself to be much more productive in making my home feel like a home.

Feels Like Home Series

Get Down to Business

Whether you use standard cleaning products or prefer the more natural and organic route, gather up all the supplies you need and sit down with our spring cleaning list to get started.  We love using essential oils to clean not only for the lack of harmful ingredients but also the amazing smells that linger in the house.  Remember to start small and try not to marathon clean or you will find yourself grumpy and tired.  We pick a room a week to deep clean and work together as a family to get it all done.  By the end, the clutter is gone and the house is nice and sparkly.


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